Petition for Coventry University to refund course fees for the 2020/2021 academic year

Petition for Coventry University to refund course fees for the 2020/2021 academic year

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Lou Woods started this petition to Coventry University and

The student body of Coventry University demand that those in management with the effective powers to do so refund the course fees for the 2020/2021 academic year to figures similar to those offered by other entirely-online institutes such as the Open University, in order to properly reflect the quality of teaching, facilities, and overall educational engagement provided during the periods affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

It is understood that the pandemic has led to unavoidable alterations to the University's operation, in the interests of protecting health. This petition was not made with the goal of decrying the protective measures the University has put in place. Rather, it is the demand of the student body that the course fees for this affected period be partially refunded to properly reflect the serious changes to the educational experience that have resulted from these measures.

The following are a number of specific examples the student body highlights as justification for this demand:

  • There is no longer 24/7 access to the Lanchester Library, and the facilities therein have been dramatically reduced;
  • Physical lecture attendance has been replaced with pre-recorded video material, meaning there is no interaction with lecture tutors for the purposes of clarification, discussion, or other integral parts of the lecture dynamic;
  • Seminars and classes have become online video calls that are wholly reliant on the Internet facilities of the individual student. These are riddled with technical issues and are simply not an effective alternative to physical attendance. While the University has given the option for a 'blended' approach incorporating physical attendance, this is effectively asking students to either risk theirs and others' health by attending in person, or to be satisfied with a massively inferior online alternative.
  • Physical textbooks and course materials are not available, and have been replaced with online copies of books with severely limited availability, or online material that is simply not a satisfactory alternative to the materials offered in previous semesters.

When the University promised 5 hours a week of teaching, what was expected was not what was delivered. Instead, students have received a bare-boned husk of the education that has been delivered in previous years. Furthermore, communication from the University management regarding this situation and the changes therein has been lacking to the point of being non-existent. Students have been left confused by the silence from the University regarding how they are incorporating Government guidelines into their education.

It is for these reasons that the student body demands an effective refund of the course fees for this academic year. The education that has been delivered simply does not justify the costs paid by the students to the University and so the student body will not be satisfied until these demands have been effectively considered.

 

 

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